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A maturing manifesto: The constitutionalisation of children’s rights in South African jurisprudence 2007-2012

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This article represents the next in a series of five-year overviews of children’s rights in the courts in South Africa. Using the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the African Charter on the Welfare of Children as a point of departure, the study suggests that it is in the public sphere that children’s rights have had their most impact in the period under review. The article highlights eight areas of distinction in this five-year period: these include judicial approval of resource mobilisation for the fulfilment of children’s rights, emphasis on the quality of and standards in education; the development of innovative remedies to deal with unreasonable state measures affecting children, and an increasing focus on the right to dignity of the child. The authors conclude that the scope of the cases cited points to the growing insertion of children’s rights considerations in increasingly diverse areas of legal interaction. Furthermore, the authors posit that the CRC and ACRWC – together with non-binding sources of international law – have substantively informed and enriched the jurisprudence of South African courts.

Affiliations: 1: a)Faculty of Law, University of the Western Cape, South Africa E-mail: jsloth-nielsen@uwc.ac.za; 2: b)Community Law Centre, University of the Western Cape, South Africa E-mail: h.kruuse@ru.ac.za

10.1163/15718182-02102005
/content/journals/10.1163/15718182-02102005
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1. African Child Policy Forum, The African Report on Child Wellbeing: Budgeting for Children (Addis Ababa, 2011)
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7. Sloth-Nielsen J. ‘ "The contribution of children’s rights to the reconstruction of society: Some implications of the constitutionalisation of children’s rights in South Africa"’, International Journal on Children’s Rights Vol 4( 1996): 323344. [Crossref]
8. Sloth-Nielsen J. ‘ "Children’s rights in the South African courts: An overview since ratification of the UN convention on the rights of the child"’, International Journal of Children’s Rights Vol 10( 2002): 137156.
9. Sloth-Nielsen J. ,, & Mezmur B. , ‘ "2 + 2 = 5? exploring the domestication of the CRC in South African jurisprudence (2002–2006)"’, International Journal of Children’s Rights Vol 16( 2008): 128. [Crossref]
10. South African Law Reform Commission, Publication of Divorce Proceedings: Section 12 of the Divorce Act (Act 70 of 1979) Report ( 2002) Project 114.
11. Zaal F.N. , ‘ "A first finding of unconstitutionality regarding the Children’s Act 38 of 2005: C v Gauteng Department of Health and Social Welfare [2011] JOL 27 290 (GNP)"’, THRHR Vol 75( 2012): 162170.
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/content/journals/10.1163/15718182-02102005
2013-01-01
2018-09-24

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